Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Step 1: Poke a few holes in sweet potatoes and bake for 40-50 min. at 200 degrees.
- Step 2: Cut the onion, dice the bell pepper and put it all together with the black beans in the pan to fry it lightly. Season with salt and pepper.
- Step 3: For guacamole, mash your avocado and stir in lime juice, sea salt and black pepper.
- Step 4: Use a knife to cut sweet potatoes in half. Stuff with onion, black beans and bell pepper.
- Step 5: Scoop guacamole on top of each sweet potato.
Nutrition is important for everyone. Healthy eating means eating a variety of foods that give you the nutrients you need to maintain your health, feel good, and have energy for the upcoming tasks of your day or of your life. When combined with being physically active and maintaining a healthy weight, eating well is an excellent way to do so. A healthy diet helps to protect against malnutrition in all its forms, and helps to prevent short-term and long-term diseases. Eating healthy is not about deprivation, following strict nutrition rules or starving yourself to lose weight. It is about getting and staying healthy by making smarter food choices, including watching portion sizes, limiting fat consumption, eating natural, whole foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains and reducing processed food in the diet. In the perfect case, such a diet should be started in childhood, maintained through adulthood and into old age.
As we already know how to start your day right with a nutritious breakfast, let us talk about lunch. Such as every meal, lunch should be nutritionally balanced and enjoyable.
Each of us has his or her own rhythm. Due to the variety of jobs and the individual physical conditions and characteristics, the diet of each of us is different. Some do not eat breakfast and eat a lot in the evening, others need breakfast to start the day properly and eat a small portion in the evening. The fact is that lunch should be the bridge between breakfast and dinner. Depending on the time of breakfast and the daily routine, lunch is omitted for some. The risk in this case is often the underestimation of the long time period until dinner, because unhealthy snacks are interspersed, which are the enemy of a healthy diet. Mostly, these snacks are also perceived unconsciously, which makes you end up wondering why your physical goals are not achieved. A more conscious perception of what, when and how much we eat contributes significantly to a healthy eating style. Regulated meals throughout the day, which includes a full lunch, solve this problem.
Even if the lunch is healthy, it should always fit into the overall nutrition plan. That's where quantity also plays a crucial role. Some people do well with a larger lunch if they have an active day. Other people may eat small snacks throughout the day and for them, a light lunch is enough. Eating should be intuitive by listening to your body. If you are satisfied with 3/4 of your lunch, save the rest for a snack later or keep it for the next day. Larger portions can be counterproductive in some cases and worsen your activity.
Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
If you've been looking around for a healthy lunch. You can stop searching, we got something for you. Stuffed sweet potatoes! Regardless of your workout goal, whether it's losing weight, building muscle, or just feeling good, this dish is amazing. The carbohydrates from the sweet potatoes provide you with the necessary energy for the day. The black beans give you the protein your body needs. As vegetables, the avocado and the bell peppers give you important vitamins and nutrients, contributing to a healthy diet.
Taking all the ingredients together into one meal, this is a great way to eat healthy at lunchtime and in addition to that, it's also super easy to cook.
GeneralThe sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas) is a starchy, sweet-tasting root vegetable, which belongs to the morning glory family of flowering plants. It has a thin, brown outer skin with bright-colored flesh, which is most commonly orange, but other varieties include white, purple or yellow. It is different from a white potato, which belongs to the nightshade plant family and is more closely related to eggplants and tomatoes. Just like regular potatoes, they are native to Southern America. The Inca were already cultivating sweet potatoes 800 year after Christ. Probably Columbus brought the first sweet potatoes to Europe. Nowadays sweet potatoes are grown in warm, moderate climates across the world, including North and South America, Asia or Africa. Although it is not common in European countries, the leaves of the sweet potato are also quite edible.
BenefitsSweet potatoes are a good source of fiber, vitamins and minerals. The fiber they contain extends the feeling of fullness for longer periods and helps to curb snacking tendencies throughout the day. Additionally, the fiber content can help to prevent constipation and promote regularity for a healthy digestive tract. One aspect that is positive as well is that sweet potatoes are especially rich in beta-carotene, which our body converts to vitamin A. The high doses of vitamin A is key for eye health, the immune system and especially for women of childbearing age as it promotes fertility. Cooked sweet potatoes have a low glycemic index, meaning they won't raise the blood sugar as quickly which can help prevent and manage diabetes.
Sweet potatoes don't really have disadvantages but risks that you should be aware of. The contained oxalates bind both calcium and minerals and can lead to kidney stones if consumed in high amounts. Potassium is another potential risk and may not be suitable for people taking beta blockers, especially those with heart diseases.
GeneralThe avocado, also called alligator pear, fruit of Persea americana of the family Lauraceae, a tree native to the Western Hemisphere from Mexico South to the Andean regions. Avocado fruits have greenish or yellowish flesh with a buttery consistency and a rich, nutty flavor. It also belongs to the so-called climacteric fruits. This means that it is harvested from the tree in an unripe state and then ripens within the next ten days. The cultivation of avocados began more than 10.000 years ago in South and Central America, Southeast Asia and Africa. Today, the pear-shaped butter fruit also grows in southern Spain and Israel.
The avocados provide many important nutrients (vitamin B, vitamin C, vitamin E, potassium and copper) and is therefore considered a vitamin bomb. They are high in fat with 60% of this being monounsaturated fats, which research suggests helps to protect against heart disease and lower blood pressure. Despite this high fat content, the avocado can support weight loss by giving a long-lasting feeling of satiety. They also provide the carotenoids lutein, lycopene and zeaxanthin that are natural pigments involved in the visual process. Especially lutein is said to help against age-related eye diseases.
The production of a single avocado requires an average of 70 liters of water, in some regions even significantly more. Due to its dependence on a lot of sun, the avocado is usually grown in dry tropical and subtropical areas and irrigated artificially. This causes the avocado to be grown only in certain regions so that the long transport routes are detrimental to the environment.
GeneralBlack beans are scientifically known as Phaseolus vulgaris and are an herbaceous and annual plant belonging to the legume or bean family Fabaceae. Black beans have been a staple of North American diets for at least 7.000 years and have several common names including turtle beans, “caviar criollo” and “frijoles negros”. In 15th century, black beans were discovered by Spanish explorers in Peru, who brought them to Europe. From there, it spread to Asia and Africa and became popular due to its easy storability, easy growth, taste and texture. Nowadays, Brazil and India are the main producers of dried black beans. Still today, the beans are harvested and consumed immaturely.
Black beans are versatile, cholesterol free, high in fiber (15 grams per cooked cup), rich in protein (15.24 grams per cooked cup) and low in fat (less than a gram of fat per cooked cup). They are protein powerhouses, with 7 grams of protein in a 1/2 cup serving. Unlike many other foods that are high in carbohydrates, black beans don't cause a spike in blood sugar. They are rich in resistant starch, which is a type of dietary fiber that is promoting a healthy gut flora and may act as prebiotic. The contained plant compounds called flavonoids have powerful anti-inflammatory properties. Black beans also contain some phytonutrients, mainly polyphenols in the coating, which may be beneficial as antioxidants. Research has shown that a diet rich in beans may help to reduce your risk of certain cancers, including those of the stomach, kidney, and colon.
Flatulence and stomach distress, including stool changes and bloating are the common side effects of consuming black beans. Especially for older people with intestinal diseases this problem is mainly relevant. The reason for this is that legumes contain oligosaccharides known as galactans – complex sugars that the body cannot digest because it lacks the necessary enzyme – alpha-galactosidase.
Bell peppers belong to the species Capsicum annuum and are members of the nightshade family along with eggplants, tomatoes and potatoes. Often referred to as sweet peppers they are widely cultivated for their edible, bell-shaped fruits, which are characterized by a glossy exterior of different colors, including red, yellow, green and orange. Bell peppers were already cultivated in Central America about 9.000 years ago; more precise is the origin in the region of what today is known as Mexico. Similar to the sweet potato, Christopher Columbus brought chili peppers with him to Europe right on his first voyage. Nowadays, large growing areas are located in China, Mexico, USA, Belgium, Netherlands, Hungary and Spain.
Bell peppers are very low in fat and calories - about 1 gram of fat and 29 calories per cup, which makes them a perfect snack option. Bell peppers are high in vitamin C, especially red peppers. Peppers have two important things runners need—water and vitamin C. They are about 90 percent water and have more vitamin C than an orange. They contain vitamin A and potassium, which are essential for maintaining muscle mass and healthy blood pressure. Carotenoids is also a substance, which is included in bell peppers. In particular, two carotenoids called lutein and zeaxanthin, when eaten in sufficient amounts, appear to improve eye health. They do this by protecting the retina from oxidative damage. Further, the carotenoids appear to improve eye health and have powerful antioxidant effects that can prevent certain types of cancer. One more benefit is the high amount of vitamin B6 bell peppers contain. If you are feeling blue, try to increase the amount of B6 you consume to improve your mood. The vitamin B6 also aids in melatonin production as well, which your body needs to regulate its internal clock.